I love starting things and it’s exhilarating to close out a project, but the middle ground can be a drag and it is your habits in the middle that will either move you across the “great divide” to complete your project or risk shifting into neutral and allowing projects to slowly fade and die.
The goal was ambitious. Public interest was high. Experts were eager to contribute. Money was readily available. (the following is an excerpt from the book Start With Why by Simon Sinek)
Armed with every ingredient for success, Samuel Pierpont Langley set out in the early 1900’s to be the first man to pilot an airplane. Highly regarded, he was a senior officer at the Smithsonian Institution, a mathmatics professor who had also worked at Harvard. His friends included some of the most powerful men in government and business, including Andrew Carnegie and Alexander Graham Bell. Langley was given a $50,000 grant from the War Department to fund his project, a tremendous amount of money at the time. He pulled the best minds of the day, a dream team of varied talents and know how. Langley and his team used the finest material, and the press followed him everywhere. People all over the country were riveted to the story, waiting to read that he had achieved his goal. With the team he had gathered and the ample resources, he success was guaranteed. Or was it?
A few hundred miles away, Wilbur and Orville Wright were working on their own flying machine. Their passion to fly was so intense that it inspired the enthusiasm and commitment of a dedicated group in their hometown of Dayton, Ohio. There was no funding for their venture. No government grants. No high-level connections. Not a single person on the team had an advanced degree or even a college education, not even Wilbur and Orville. But the team banded together in a humble bicycle shop and made their vision real. On December 17, 1903, a small group witnessed a man take flight for the first time in history.
How did the Wright brothers succeed where a better-equipped, better-funded and better educated team could not?
It wasn’t luck. Both the Wright brothers and Langley were highly motivated. Both had a strong work ethic. Both had keen scientific minds. They were pursuing exactly the same goal, but only the Wright brothers were able to inspire those around them and truly lead their team to develop a technology that would change our world.
When Langley didn’t achieve his goal of being the first to fly, he simply walked away from it all. He quit. Giving us insight into his real motivation. The Wright brothers on the other hand were known for bring 3-5 sets of parts to each flight attempt, knowing they could fail that many times in a day and they didn’t want to take the time to go back to the shop and get more parts.
What made the Wright brothers succeed while Langley couldn't? What is the difference between Apple and other computer companies? Why are Apple owners so passionate about their brand?
Loyalty is when people are willing to turn down a better product or a better price to continue doing business with you. Loyal customers don’t even bother to research the competition or entertain other options. Loyalty is not easily won.
So what is it with Apple and why are their customers so loyal? Author Simon Sinek claims that the secret of the greatest companies (and the greatest churches) is that they Start With Why.
To order a copy of Start With Why by Simon Sinek CLICK HERE.